Topic: Readiness to do God’s Will
[DCLM Daily Manna 11 August 2019 Daily Devotional by Pastor William Folorunso Kumuyi]
Text: Ezra 10:12-17 (KJV)
12 Then all the congregation answered and said with a loud voice, As thou hast said, so must we do.
13 But the people are many, and it is a time of much rain, and we are not able to stand without, neither is this a work of one day or two: for we are many that have transgressed in this thing.
14 Let now our rulers of all the congregation stand, and let all them which have taken strange wives in our cities come at appointed times, and with them the elders of every city, and the judges thereof, until the fierce wrath of our God for this matter be turned from us.
15 Only Jonathan the son of Asahel and Jahaziah the son of Tikvah were employed about this matter: and Meshullam and Shabbethai the Levite helped them.
16 And the children of the captivity did so. And Ezra the priest, with certain chief of the fathers, after the house of their fathers, and all of them by their names, were separated, and sat down in the first day of the tenth month to examine the matter.
17 And they made an end with all the men that had taken strange wives by the first day of the first month.
Key Verse: “Then all the congregation answered and said with a loud voice, As thou hast said, so must we do” (Ezra 10:12).
Herman Melville once said, “All the things that God would have us to do are hard for us to do – remember that – and hence, He often commands us than endeavors to persuade. And if we obey God, we must disobey ourselves, wherein the hardness of obeying God consists.” Obedience is what separates saints from sinners and victors from victims. And it is obedience to His words that God desires from everyone of His children.
In today’s passage, we read about the response of the men of Judah and Benjamin to the charge from Ezra, the priest. He wanted the people to make their ways right with God. The Israelites had gone into wrong marriages and unholy alliances with the people of the land. He told them to confess to God and do His pleasure by separating from the people of the land and from their strange wives. The people recognised that they had transgressed and disobeyed the law of God about marriage and friendship with unbelievers and they were ready to make their way right with God. Everyone, including their rulers, the elders of every city was involved in this great move of revival which lasted for three months.
Today, the expectation of God is that believers should shun any form of unequal yoke with unbelievers in marriage, friendship, business and worship. The reason for this is not farfetched. A dog on leash is a dog not free. Such is the condition of Christian yoked with unbelievers. His will is not fully his own and his ways cannot be free from negative influence.
A Christian belongs to a chosen generation. Although in the world, believers are not of the world and should therefore not be ashamed of maintaining separate and distinct identity in the world.
Thought For The Day: Doing the will of God makes a man acceptable to God.
The Bible In One Year: Titus 1–3